Fifty-year-old Tarun Thakral’s passion for motor vehicles has taken the shape of India’s first comprehensive transport museum in Tauru in Mewat district where around 75 vintage cars are on display.
The 1932 Chevrolet, 1938 Ford, 1946 Buick, 1955 Chevrolet Belair, 1957 Ford Fairlane, 1947 Hudson, 1935 Buick Limousine, 1959 Impala and the 1946 Nash are some of the priced assets in this Heritage Transport Museum.
“I visited several countries where I saw such museums with vintage cars and it took me twenty years to collect these cars from all over India. My first vintage car was a 1932 Chevrolet, which I bought in Rajasthan. The preparation of setting up this museum started in 2009. This museum depicts the development that has taken place in the modes of transportation over the years,” Tarun, the founder and managing trustee of Heritage Transport Museum, said.
Tarun is also the chief operating officer of Hotel Le Meriden in New Delhi. He completed his MBA from Cornell University in Paris in the early 1990s.
Over the weekend, the museum organised a two-day second anniversary carnival where it launched a street jewellery project.
According to Tarun, street jewellery is a dying art of truck painting where trucks are decorated with reflective tapes – a practice which was prevalent in the Indian sub-continent around the Independence.
“Truck painting is a dying art as we have modern technology and computer graphics today. For the preservation and promotion of this art, we have called a Pakistani artist to visit the museum in January,” Tarun said.
Artist from Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will also join the project later to showcase their talent of truck art painting, Tarun added.
The show stopper at the launch of street jewellery was a 1952 Dodge pickup truck, adorned with reflective stickers, which are used to decorate trucks for better visibility at night.
After its inauguration in 2013, about 1.5 lakh people have visited the museum, Tarun said.
The museum is also home to over 2,500 objects on display that weave a tale of India’s colourful transportation history. The large and varied collection of this museum has been categorised as pre-mechanised and heavy mechanised transportation, railways, aviation, maritime and two-wheelers.